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5 Tech Skills Every Paralegal Should Know

The duties and responsibilities of a paralegal are very diverse. 5 Tech Skills Every Paralegal Should Know. Understand How to Use e-discovery Technology

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5 Tech Skills Every Paralegal Should Know

The duties and responsibilities of a paralegal are very diverse. The support that these professionals provide to attorneys is critical to the success of the entire firm. Additionally, there are some essential tech skills that every paralegal must know to do their jobs effectively and efficiently. Keeping these things in mind, here are 5 of the most important for any law office.

1. Understand How to Use e-discovery Technology

When a paralegal is trained in the legal field to do their jobs, they must know all of the different processes that are currently being used by their lawyers in court. Since the information that an attorney needs is available in various forms, the paralegal needs to know how to use more than one type of technology to accomplish their jobs efficiently. One commonly known technological resource is called e-discovery.

This resource is an electronic database where information is stored and retrieved for litigation in court. In this part of the automated legal process, the paralegal roles involve the following:

  • Collect
  • Review
  • Produce
  • Persevere

Each of the above is a critical part of the technology that’s used in the discovery process of a case.

2. Software Applications — Word Processing, Spreadsheets, and PowerPoint

Another big part of a paralegal job is to produce information for the attorneys that they support using different types of software applications. Some of the most commonly known and used in a law firm include the latest versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

e-discovery Technology Paralegal

Word Processing applications are used to produce content that can be used in the form of a letter, report, etc. To expedite the process of this kind of work, the paralegal must be proficient in performing all of the functions required to add images and format a document. In some cases, the paralegal may even be required to pass a Word course to be approved for the job. These professionals must also be proficient in producing spreadsheets and PowerPoint presentations.

3. Must Be Able to Send Electronic Fax

Attorneys tend to be on strict schedules to produce information in discovery; the paralegal’s support is imperative in getting things done quickly. For instance, if an attorney needs a document sent to them while in court or they need to send confidential information immediately, knowledge of the use of electronic faxing is imperative.

4. Understand the Usage and Benefits of Video Conferencing

Meetings across locations and time zones can be challenging. For this reason, video conferencing can keep everyone on the same page. Because not all attorneys are in the same office location for the meetings that they are required to attend, the paralegal must be able to set up a video conference at any time. Fortunately, there is a wide range of excellent benefits that people can benefit from significantly today; one of the most important is meeting live from diverse remote locations in countries all over the globe.

5. Retrieving Information with a Document Management System

When a paralegal is helping an attorney to prepare for, they need to make sure that they are well versed in their document management systems. In many cases, these systems are easy to learn. By using this kind of digital management system, the paralegal can easily retrieve documents, make sure that they are categorized correctly, and store for later usage. For instance, if a paralegal is helping an attorney to find information in a document management system, they can obtain the info in a matter of minutes instead of hours.

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Computer Monitor and Other Remote Work Must-Haves

Make sure you have a computer monitor, various network cable types, and other remote work must-haves that I will discuss in this guide.

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Computer Monitor and Other Remote Work Must-Haves

Working remotely is a great way to increase productivity. It can help you avoid the distractions of an office environment and makes it easier to set your hours. But if you’re not careful, working from home can also lead to some serious work-life balance issues.

To make sure that you’re getting the most out of your remote work experience, make sure you have a computer monitor, various network cable types, and other remote work must-haves that I will discuss in this guide.

1. A Computer Monitor

This is probably the most important item on this list. If you don’t have a good monitor, then it will be impossible to work efficiently.

While it may be tempting to go with a smaller, cheaper screen to save money, this isn’t always a good idea. The bigger your screen, the more productive you’ll be. You will be able to see more of your images and documents without scrolling or zooming in and out.

There are main things to consider when buying a monitor:

2. Screen resolution and screen size.

The resolution refers to how many pixels (dots) fit across one inch of screen real estate; the higher the number is, the sharper everything will look on your screen.

Screen size should be based on personal preference and how much space you have available in your office or home office setup.

2. Webcam

A camera is essential for video chat and video conferencing. Many webcams come with microphones built-in, so you can conduct conference calls without having to purchase additional equipment.

If you want to make sure everyone in the room can see and hear you clearly, make sure your webcam has a built-in microphone jack.

If your laptop doesn’t have a built-in webcam, you can buy it separately for about $20 from retailers. There are even some companies that offer free webcams for employees who work remotely.

3. External Storage Device

You’ll need an external hard drive to store all of your files so that they’re not taking up space on your computer’s internal memory which can fill up quickly.

External storage devices come in different sizes and speeds so make sure you buy one that’s big enough for what you need.

What Is the Internet of Things (IoT) Everything You Need to Know

4. Internet Connection

If you’re going to be working from home or a coffee shop or anywhere else outside the office, you need good internet access to do your job.

No matter what kind of internet connection you have at home, it is essential that your internet connection is fast enough to research online and download required documents.

5. Ethernet Cables

If you’re working from home, you might be tempted to use Wi-Fi for your internet connection instead of an Ethernet cable. While this may seem more convenient at first glance, it’s not a good idea because Wi-Fi can be affected by interference from other devices in the area.

6. Headphones

While many remote workers prefer to work in silence, there are times when it’s better to have some background noise or music playing while you work.

Headphones allow you to listen to music without bothering anyone else around you. Plus, they reduce distractions from outside noise that could otherwise distract you from getting work done.

Consider investing in a pair of noise-canceling headphones if you’ll be working in public places often; these types of headphones block out external sounds so that only what’s inside them can be heard clearly which means no distractions for you.

7. An Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)

If the power goes out, your computer goes down which means no work gets done. Make sure that won’t happen by using an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) with surge protection features that will continue running your computer even if there’s a power outage at home or in the office building where you work remotely.

8. A laptop

You will need a computer with internet access to work remotely. You can use your personal computer or purchase one that has been made for working remotely.

If you use your computer, make sure it has enough memory and processing power to handle the tasks you need it to do. It should also have virus protection software installed on it at all times.

9. A Good Laptop Bag

The last thing you want is for your laptop to get damaged or stolen while traveling with all of your other personal belongings inside of it. Make sure you have a protective case or sleeve that can protect it from impact damage as well as theft.

10. A Comfortable Chair and Desk

This may seem obvious, but it’s essential to have a desk and a good chair in your home office or den. You don’t need anything too fancy, just a place to set your laptop and put things like pens and paper that you might need during the day.

You’ll be sitting in a chair for hours at a time, so make sure it’s comfortable. If you have back issues, spend the money on a good ergonomic office chair.

11. A Desk Lamp

This is another pretty obvious one, but it’s often overlooked when setting up remote workspaces. A desk lamp will keep your eyes from straining at night and make it easier for you to stay focused on what you’re working on.

If possible, choose one with an adjustable arm so that it can be used as both an overhead light source and a task light when needed.

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